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The Red Badge Of Courage

 

by Stephen Crane
 
"The Red Badge of Courage", a novel by Stephen Crane, is a
captivating book. It is the story of a young man who
becomes a soldier and fights during an episode of the Civil
War. In this book, not only does he fight the Rebels, but
he fights his fears. Entering the battle a fearful youth,
he comes out a brave warrior.
 
I recommend this book for several reasons, the most
important being the theme and characterization, which go
hand in hand throughout the book. The theme is that one
must think through, then face his/her fears to overcome
them. Henry Fleming is a perfect example of this theme in
action. The first time he fights, he becomes afraid and
runs away. But as he starts fighting the battle not only
physically but mentally, he begins to succeed and becomes a
brave hero admired by his peers and superiors. This theme
may be applied to almost any fear one faces, since all
fears are in the mind. If one can calmly think things
through before heading straight into them, he will have
more control at the right time, and have a greater chance
of succeeding. As Henry proves, once a fear has been
overcome by the mind, it is nearly gone.
 
Characterization also plays a major role in this book.
Henry's peers do not express the emotions that some of them
obviously feel. For this reason, Henry has nobody to
confide in, but is left to battle his own fears.
 
The diction of this book is also another positive factor
for the reader. The story is easy-reading, and flows
smoothly. The vocabulary is simple, and because of this,
the reader is not caught up in the words and is left to
enjoy the story. The characters' dialect also adds a
special touch, and makes the story more true to life.
 
This book is also incredibly realistic, which is why it
captivates the reader so. Never even having seen a battle
in his life, the author recreates an extremely realistic
battle scene. The rich details in the story almost let the
reader dive into the story and smell the smoke, see the
blood, or hear the rifles firing.
 
Again, I highly recommend this book for readers looking for
a good war story. This book has a theme which teaches a
good lesson, and it is fun and easy to read. "The Red Badge
of Courage" is definitely worth experiencing.
 

 




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